Friday, January 26, 2007

The Original Mega Church Planter

Who is this mega church planter? You will be surprised by who it is and the impact he has had. See here.

Thanks to Justin Taylor.
Looking for a Good Book to Read?

If you are looking for a good Christian book to read, you may want to check out my wish list, and browse for something that catches your eye. With so many books being published today, what does one read? This list of over 300 books on various topics may help you in your walk with the Lord. (Check back regularly, because it is continually updated.) May God richly bless you!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The New Perspective on Paul found Wanting

Dr. Stephen Westerholm, associate professor of religious studies at McMaster University, has written an excellent and clear paper critiquing the New Perspective on Paul (famous advocates of this position include N.T. Wright, James Dunn, and E.P. Sanders). See here.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

A New Must See Movie: Amazing Grace

Check out this amazing new movie. Also see John Piper's Reflections on the Life and Labour of William Wilberforce titled: "Peculiar Doctrines, Public Morals, and Political Welfare" and Piper's new book on Wiberforce's life. For more information on the movie see below:

"You may choose to look the other way but you can never again say you did not know." This was William Wilberforce's conclusion to his three hour debate in the Houses of Parliament before Members of Parliament voted on his Abolition Bill in 1789.

William Wilberforce was born into the age of the Great British Empire, when the country's influence around the globe was at its most powerful. It was, however, an age when the rumblings of social discontent were emerging and a time when reformers faced an uphill struggle to be heard.

A good friend and staunch colleague of England's youngest ever Prime Minister, Pitt the Younger, Wilberforce was entrusted with the policy for the Abolition of Slavery. Torn between a life of spirituality and a career in politics, he was inspired to take his desire for the equality of all mankind into the House of Commons. Seeking the advice of John Newton, a former slave trader and author of the hymn "Amazing Grace," Wilberforce became the rallying voice in Parliament for a fragmented group of like-minded people to fight for the cause and make the people of Britain, and ultimately the world, acknowledge the horror of the Slave Trade.

The sugar trade was at the heart of the British economy, and it depended entirely on slave labour. With the majority of MPs representing the sugar and slave trades opposing Wilberforce in the House of Commons, he faced a mammoth task in attempting to persuade them to abolish slavery. His prowess as an orator, coupled with his firm belief that abolition was his vocation, made Wilberforce a formidable opponent. Throughout his turbulent career, he was keenly supported and inspired by his wife Barbara's love and commitment to the cause.

Amazing Grace follows Wilberforce's career through his 20's and 30's, when he and his fellow humanitarians made the issue of slavery a talking point, not only in political circles, but also throughout the country. They waged the first modern political campaign, using prayer, petitions, boycotts, mass meetings and even badges with slogans to take their message to the country at large. Wilberforce steered this cause through the corridors of power and ultimately opened the way for the abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire. His success came after decades of fighting when Parliament finally passed the first anti-slavery bill in 1807.

Amazing Grace is directed by Michael Apted (The World is Not Enough, Coal Miner's Daughter) from an original screenplay written by Academy Award® nominee Steven Knight.

The film stars Ioan Gruffudd (Black Hawk Down), Albert Finney (Erin Brockovich), Romola Garai (Vanity Fair), Michael Gambon (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban), Benedict Cumberbatch (Hawking), Rufus Sewell (Legend of Zorro), Ciaran Hinds (Rome) and introduces Youssou N'Dour.

Executive Producer is Jeanney Kim, with Mark Cooper as co-producer. Producers on the film are Terrence Malick (The Thin Red Line) and Ed Pressman under their Sunflower Productions banner, Patricia Heaton and David Hunt for FourBoys Films, and Ken Wales.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

N.T. Wright on the right (and the left)

In the most recent Christianity Today, N.T. Wright says the following:

"[Like the second century,] we have neo-paganisms of the Right and the Left. On the Right you've got war and money, Mars and Mammon, calling the shots. If you oppose the necessity of going to war, you're not quite sane. And if you say you've just been offered a job at double the salary but you're going to stay with what you are doing, people will look at you as though you are mad, because the money imperative is just assumed to be all important. It's not just that they disagree or think you're stupid, they just cannot understand what you're talking about.

And the same paganism is on the Left. Obviously, sex, the goddess Aphrodite, makes demands. To resist those demands for whatever reason is just assumed to be completely incomprehensible. Somebody falls in love with the wrong person, and it's just a shoulder-shrugging thing. Of course you've got to do that because this is the imperative, this is what our culture is all about.'"

View the whole article here.

Thanks to Carl Trueman for the reference.

Quote of the Day

"The great tragedy is not mainly masturbation or fornication or acting like a peeping Tom (or curious Cathy) on the internet. The tragedy is that Satan uses the guilt of these failures to strip you of every radical dream you ever had, or might have, and in its place give you a happy, safe, secure, American life of superficial pleasures until you die in your lakeside rocking chair, wrinkled and useless, leaving a big fat inheritance to your middle-aged children to confirm them in their worldliness. That’s the main tragedy."

This is from John Piper's Passion 2007 message, How to Deal with the Guilt of Sexual Failure for the Glory of Christ and His Global Cause.

Thanks to Justin Taylor.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Is Self-Love Biblical?

Dr. Daniel Wallace
looks at Matthew 22:39 here.
Essential Concerns Regarding the Emerging Church

While most are excited about the missional focus of the emerging church, many have some legitimate concerns. Brett Kunkle from Stand to Reason provided a balanced and informative talk at the Evangelical Theological Society's Annual Metting in Washington D.C. from November 15-17, 2006. This is must reading!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

If You Think that Your Desk is Messy...

Next time someone comments on how messy your desk is, just show them this picture:

This is athesitic philospher Quentin Smith looking for something in his faculty office. See also Kings of Chaos (the six messiest desks at the University of Chicago) and if you need further justification for a messy desk see: What Does Your Desk Say About You? (people with messier desks tend to have more education and make more money).

Thanks to Justin Taylor for all of the above.